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SLOUGH

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SLOUGH

Postby Dr. Goodword » Mon Apr 06, 2009 10:55 pm

• slough •

Pronunciation: slu (US), slaw (UK) • Hear it!

Part of Speech: Noun

Meaning: 1. A swamp, marsh, or tidal flat; a shallow bog or mire, a backwater at a river inlet. 2. An emotional mire, a deep depression, despair, or moral degeneration.

Notes: Do not confuse this noun with the verb slough "to shed skin" pronounced [slêf]. The final GH was originally pronounced like German or Scottish CH, like a K, but without completely stopping the flow of air in the back of the throat. This sound then either shifted to [f] (usually after U, as in laugh) or disappeared altogether, leaving the letters GH silent, as they are in today's Good Word.

In Play: Sloughs are real and emotional mires: "When Miriam Webster got her boots mired in a slough by the creek, she arrived in such a dismal slough that she didn't make the second round of the spelling bee." It is a good word to use when morale is low, but you don't want to mention it in words others might comprehend but misunderstand: "Come on, guys! We have to pull ourselves out of this slough and put some enthusiasm into marketing the company's new solar powered flashlight."

Word History: This Good Word comes from a Proto-Indo-European root with a Fickle S, an initial S we find in some languages but not in others. It is related to Russian luzha "mud puddle" and lug "meadow" which, as you can see, lost the initial S. The Germanic languages, however, kept the S. Middle English also had a word slonk "hollow depression in the ground", which may be related. If so, it suggests that the original root may have had a Fickle N, too.
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Re: SLOUGH

Postby Stargzer » Tue Apr 07, 2009 12:39 am

Dr. Goodword wrote: ... It is a good word to use when morale is low, but you don't want to mention it in words others might comprehend but misunderstand: "Come on, guys! We have to pull ourselves out of this slough and put some enthusiasm into marketing the company's new solar powered flashlight." ...


Actually, solar powered flashlights have been around for many a year, and this is just one example from a quick search.
Regards//Larry

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Postby LukeJavan8 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 11:45 am

In the western part of our state there are canal-like
things in the sand hills and they are named and called
"sloughs", like,e.g., Hansen Slough.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
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Postby Perry Lassiter » Thu Aug 11, 2011 4:46 pm

Anyone remember the essay on slough we had to read in English class? It was entitled "A Hole Full of Dirt."
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Postby Slava » Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:18 pm

Perry Lassiter wrote:Anyone remember the essay on slough we had to read in English class? It was entitled "A Hole Full of Dirt."
It sure didn't come up in my reading assignments. Do you remember who wrote it?
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Postby bamaboy56 » Thu Aug 11, 2011 11:57 pm

Here in the good 'ol Deep South, a slough is what we call any small tributary that feeds into a wider, deeper body of water (usually a river). I've been on a number of these. Pretty creepy places.
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Fri Aug 12, 2011 11:53 am

That's probably the way they are in the western part of our
state: but I think they are man-made, diverting water
to another body.
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